The last few days in the United States have seen a parade of wealthy freaks fellating each other’s egos and preening for the cameras in outlandish garb while ordinary Americans suffer more and more.
The weekend’s White House Correspondents’ Dinner saw a gaggle of media celebrities congregate to congratulate one another on what a great job they’ve been doing bravely telling the truth and holding the most powerful government on earth to account. The host, Trevor Noah of The Daily Show, gushed with enthusiasm about how much freedom the press have in America to say things the powerful don’t like.
“As we sit in this room tonight, people, I really hope you all remember what the real purpose of this evening is,” Noah said. “Yes, it’s fun. Yes, we dress nice. Yes, the people eat, they drink, we have fun. But the reason we’re here is to honor and celebrate the fourth estates and what you stand for — what you stand for — an additional check and balance that holds power to account and gives voice to those who otherwise wouldn’t have one.”
“And if you ever begin to doubt your responsibilities, if you ever begin to doubt how meaningful it is, look no further than what’s happening in Ukraine,” said Noah. “Look at what’s happening there. Journalists are risking and even losing their lives to show the world what’s really happening. You realize how amazing it is. In America, you have the right to seek the truth and speak the truth even if it makes people in power uncomfortable, even if it makes your viewers or your readers uncomfortable. You understand how amazing that is? I stood here tonight and I made fun of the president of the United States, and I’m going to be fine. I am going to be fine, right? Do you really understand what a blessing it is?”
Of course there are people who’ve said things that US presidents don’t like who are not in fact fine. Julian Assange continues to waste away in Belmarsh Prison as the US government continues its efforts to extradite him to he can become the first publisher ever tried under the Espionage Act. Edward Snowden, an American, remains in exile because one US president after another continues to refuse to pardon his heroic whistleblowing about the sinister surveillance practices of the US intelligence cartel. Daniel Hale, also an American, sits in prison for exposing the depravity of America’s monstrous drone program.